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Reflective Journaling

Journaling is used in academia as a means of aiding reflection, deepening students understanding and stimulating critical thinking. The strength of reflective journaling is that it highlights students’ thoughts and perceptions about course content. Reflective journaling is not simply a recounting of the day’s events but a learning exercise in which students express in writing their understanding of, reflections on, response to or analysis of an event, experience or concept.


Description of a Reflective Journal

Reflective journaling provides a channel of inner communication that connects beliefs, feelings and actions, which allows students to develop their knowledge and understanding of course content.


A reflective journal is not:

  • simply a summary of the course material. Focus more on your reactions to what you've been reading, music and its forms and performance.

  • a learning log. On a learning log you might write down the times and days when you rehearsed something. A log is a record of events, but a journal is a record of your reflections and thoughts.


Entries in a reflective journal can include:

  • Points that you found especially interesting in your music, and would like to follow up in more detail.

  • Questions that came up in your mind, because of points made in material you worked on in a particular selection of music.


Possible questions for a reflective journal:

  • What was the most interesting thing I played for this lesson (mark it above with an asterisk) - why was that?

  • What were three main things I learned from this lesson?

  • What did I previously think was true, but now know to be wrong?

  • What did we not cover that I expected we should?

  • What was new or surprising to me?

  • What have I changed my mind about, as a result of this lesson?

  • One thing I learned in this lesson that I may be able to use in future is...

  • I am still unsure about...

  • Issues that interested me a lot, and that I would like to study in more detail

  • Ideas for action, based on this lesson...

  • What I most liked about this lesson was...

  • What I most disliked about this lesson was...

Miscellaneous interesting facts I learned in this lesson...

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